On the 30th of January, The Birfury Group announced its release of Crystal, which claims to be a comprehensive blockchain tool for law enforcement. Crystal also has a use case for financial institutions and forensic accounting.
Crystal gives an oversight for the blockchain, using a suite of analytics and data scraping to track suspicious transactions.
The tool also offers an in-house risk scoring protocol that will allow investigators to track malicious and illegal behaviours.
The use case of Crystal was designed around law enforcement to hunt down suspicious bitcoin trades to real-word persons and to determine the relationships between criminal actors. This information can be shared by financial and other institutions that work in compliance and due diligence.
“The blockchain has the ability to improve our daily lives and be a force for good,” Valery Vavilov is quoted as saying, who is the CEO of the Bitfury Group.
“It’s unfortunate that there are many people who attempt to use the blockchain for personal gain, and take advantage of their anonymity to commit crimes. The Crystal tool will help track down criminal actions on the blockchain. This means we have taken a significant step forward in ensuring that cryptocurrencies and their underlying blockchain technology remain safe and secure.”
The blockchain could be the future for many enterprise solutions around the world, including p2p asset transfers. However, this makes them equally vulnerable to being misused by criminals.
Features of Bitfury’s Crystal
As the technology is slowly adopted by more and more people, a suite of tools such as Crystal is required to clamp down on criminal activity. Bitfury’s Crystal claims to be one of the most comprehensive tools on the market, with its ability to find relationships between pseudonymous payments to real-word identities.
The features Crystal are the following:
- Links anonymous payments to people in the real world
- Tracks the ownership of bitcoin wallets
- Traces the connection between blockchain entities
- Provides evidence for use by financial investigators
How Does Crystal Work?
Crystal makes use of some wide-ranging features that help investigators on the blockchain to do their jobs quickly and effectively.
Crystal has dubbed this suite of tools a comprehensive tool kit.
First, Crystal brings together all the important information online into one easy to use format. This is important, as blockchains are known to contain vast amounts of data; Crystal then scrapes this information and analyses it, looking for patterns and fraudulent activity.
One feature of the blockchain is that its data is typically not linked to a specific person, which is especially true in the cases of fraud and other illicit activities. For this reason, Crystal moves beyond the Blockchain and gets its information about bitcoin addresses from other sources. These sources can include websites like forums or any other platform where blockchain users congregate.
With this approach to data, Crystal is able to unveil an entities’ address, as well as their names in the real world.
Easy to Use
Crystal is also designed to be used by anyone, making it simple and easy to use, and claims to contain more features than any other explorers for the blockchain that exist today.
The tool allows investigators to hone in on the relevant details and addresses, whilst giving them the ability to expand the details of a certain transaction.
With Crystal’s in-built tracking tools, users won’t need to spend most of their time going through each transaction manually. Crystal does this natively for network operators, and in a matter of hours.
Crystal shows a visualization of trades as they are made and a destination address, sometimes known as an exchange service address where the coins were converted to real-world dollars.
There’s an option to be notified via email when the results have been compiled. This means that users can work on other important tasks while crystal is going to work for them.
This risk scoring allows crystal to help investigators understand and compare the risks of different transactions. With this risk score in mind, agents in law enforcement and other people can trace suspicious transactions around the blockchain.
To arrive at a risk score, Crystal looks at the relationships of an entity with prescribed bad actors, which could be traders who buy and sell on the dark net. Crystal also has a database of reliable parties.
With that information in mind, Crystal predicts the score of a particular blockchain address, which is the chance that the address is used for illegal activity. The results are sent as a visualization graph and can be used in other tools or software.
Crystal is a source of data for analytics and blockchain investigations. This is due to its REST API, as it forms the foundation for a set of tools that can assess transactions for users and law enforcement.
Investigators can see the results via the Crystal interface or they may choose to integrate those results into their own software.
Crystal supplies evidence for different connections in the bitcoin blockchain, thus making it simple to see whether a transaction was made between entities. Crystal reportedly provides these reports in an easy to read format, which includes the total of transactions and the sum transferred during a set period.
Advanced Analytical Services
Includes features such as untangling, clustering, and data parsing.
A person can use more than one bitcoin address, and a single transaction could be send funds to more than one person. This makes it hard for investigators to keep track of a certain entity.
Crystal makes this easier as it allows users to focus on material parts of the investigation and not chasing figures around the blockchain. Crystal can see the flow of funds using an efficient algorithm and includes the group addresses belonging to the same owner cluster.
Secure Infrastructure Support
Crystal Pro is the brand’s customizable software, as it can be used by any internal investigation team, deployed on its in-house infrastructure. Crystal Pro can be made fully compliant to any internal security policies.
The data entered into Crystal is claimed to never leave the corporate network.
The Bitfury group is a full-service blockchain company and claims to be the largest private infrastructure providers in the blockchain ecosystem.
The group designs and delivers both hardware and software for businesses, governments, and individuals to move assets around the blockchain. Bitfury has a global team of professionals that specialize in communication, security, and civil society.
The brand believes in the future of the blockchain, and that it will be responsible for enhanced economic prosperity across the globe. Its mission is to formulate advanced blockchain apps that will innovate new developments in the peer-to-peer economy.